Citizen Observatory

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Terms of Reference for Citizen Observatory

Introduction

This Ability Trust is a non-profit organization that works to advance the rights and inclusion of women and girls with disabilities in Kenya. Our main objective is to amplify the voices and increase visibility of women and girls with disabilities. We focus our work on the thematic areas of sexual and reproductive health and economic rights.

Problem Statement

Women with disabilities face double discrimination, firstly, due to their gender as women, and secondly due to their disability. Due to the myriad of challenges faced by women with disabilities such as cultural practices and myths that are discriminatory and harmful, stigma and discrimination, including an invisibility in policies and programming which lead to a lack of access to social amenities such as education, employment, healthcare among others. 

The negative impact of corruption at county and national governments on women and girls with disabilities and its adverse effects are experienced in a variety of ways, because of the reduced investments and ineffective social protection and accountability measures. 

Project Overview

As part of our efforts to create a Citizen Observatory for and led by women with disabilities, we designed Mama Siri, a toll free service managed by women with disabilities in 8 counties (Kilifi, Kwale, Kajiado, Kakamega, Mombasa, Nairobi and Uasin Gishu Counties). Through the service we provide referrals on access to justice, public services on sexual and reproductive health and gender-based violence. We have so far received over 8,000 calls across the 8 counties that we work in. Mama Siri is at the core of all our coordination activities to document injustices happening within the community of women with disabilities. Mama Siri supports our movement building work and the discourse on corruption among women with disabilities. 

Mama Siri encourages women and girls with disabilities to share their experiences and think critically about how corruption affects their lives both at macro and micro levels. In addition, we have created safe spaces of discussion to understand the roots of corruption, where it happens, how corruption happens, who actions it, and finally what we can do about it, This helps us to understand corruption beyond the technical definitions, allows us to have a deeper comprehension on how it affects women with disabilities.This route is guiding us on our path to create our national agenda in partnership with women with disabilities.

Following this path, we found that corruption presents a unique experience among women with disabilities. The effects of corruption starts on their bodies with the lack of access to health, medication, sexual harassment and high rates of gender based violence. The violations then escalate to all the spheres of their lives and their families. We also discuss the various places corruption often occurs, and that those with a responsibility and duty of care and perpetrators of  corruption are due to power relations. Those in power take advantage and exploit the women with disabilities for their own beneficial gains and they know they can do this with impunity due to the lack of vulnerability of this community. Poor reporting mechanisms and lack of remedial action is one major reason such cases go unreported and justice is not served.  Women with disabilities need to be empowered on how corruption is both a cause and a result of poverty, and that corruption is strongly linked to their bodily autonomy.

Mama Siris now are the core of our citizen observatory that allows us to collect information to develop a national agenda on the rights of women with disabilities.

Overall Objective:

  • To create a Citizen Observatory on the experiences of women with disabilities on gender based violence

Specific Objective:

  • To develop a structure for collection of experiences of women with disabilities to be uploaded on our website
  • To train Mama Siris on the collection of experiences of violence among women with disabilities.
  • To co-create a platform on This Ability Trust website to serve as our citizen’s observatory 

Deliverables:

  • Training guide on collection of life experiences
  • Citizen Observatory platform
  • Final report of activities

Responsibilities:

  • Work in partnership with This Ability team
  • Have update meetings with This Ability team when it is required
  • Keep the confidentiality of all the process

Required Experience:

  • Master degree in Media and Communication
  • Proven experience working with women with disabilities and/or marginalized groups
  • Proven experience in developing dynamic media content and storytelling
  • Should have strong empathy and listening skills
  • Proven experience in research from a gender and human rights perspective

N.B. Qualified women with disabilities are encouraged to apply.

Exclusion Clause 

This Ability Trust has zero tolerance for corruption and fraud. 
This Ability Trust reserves the right to offer comparable assignments to those qualified candidates that may not have been selected for this consultancy assignment for which they applied for. These offers will be based on the needs of the organization, appropriateness, and relevance to the candidate’s educational background and work experience. Only those candidates in whose qualifications and experience the Trust has further interest will be contacted for subsequent interviews.

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